Summer Programs

Below you will find summer opportunities made available to MHS students.

VolunTEEN at McDowell Hospital

VolunTEEN is an excellent opportunity for students to volunteer at McDowell Hospital. The 8-week term will introduce students to the many different opportunities in the medical field and give students hand-on experience working with professionals at the hospital. Please see Ms. Gross in the 9th grade office for an application.

NC State Summer Program - The Shelton Challenge

The First-Year Shelton Challenge is a six-day summer experience for rising freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors in high school. Shelton’s five cornerstones of values-based leadership—honesty, integrity, compassion, diversity and social responsibility—are the foundations of the camp. The core curriculum focuses on Personal Leadership Assessment and Interpersonal Dynamics, Role of Values and Ethics in Leadership, Leadership Traits and Approaches, Team building and Empowering Others, Social Responsibility, Public Speaking, and Goal Setting.

The First-Year Shelton Challenge seeks youth who are rising 9th through 12th graders with a 3.0 grade point average (unweighted) or higher. Students will get to experience residence hall living, eat meals at a campus dining hall, and use indoor and outdoor recreation facilities. Cost to attend the program is $700.00 for the week.

For more information, go to

UNCSA 2018 Visual Arts Summer Intensive Program

UNC School of the Arts and Penland School of Crafts are partnering to provide full scholarships for two students from Western North Carolina to attend the Summer Visual Arts Intensive in summer 2018.

The application deadline is February 12th. The two students selected will visit UNCSA in April 2018 for a tour and orientation - families will be welcome to accompany them.

To apply, see Mr. Cox in the counseling office.

Summer Ventures

Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics is a no-cost, state-funded program for academically talented North Carolina students who aspire to careers in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.

As a rising high school junior or senior, you live on a college campus for four weeks in the summer and conduct research around topics of your interest — while enjoying the company of like-minded peers.

Who can apply?

  • Rising high school juniors or seniors who have not already participated in Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics.
  • Students whose custodial parent or guardian lives in North Carolina as of December 1, 2015.
  • Students with proven academic ability, motivation in STEM fields of study, and emotional maturity.
  • Students may apply to both Summer Ventures and Governor’s School, but they must choose one if accepted to both programs.
  • Students may apply to both Summer Ventures and North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics (NCSSM). Students must choose between Summer Ventures or the NCSSM residential program if accepted to both. NCSSM Online students can attend Summer Ventures.
  • A student on the NCSSM residential waiting list who is later accepted may attend Summer Ventures.

Residential Life

The residential program of Summer Ventures gives high school students an opportunity to live and learn in a university setting. Students live in residence halls under the supervision of qualified residential advisors who provide guidance and supervision.

All of the institutes operate under statewide guidelines regarding curfews, dating, sign-outs, and visitors.

Summer Ventures in Science and Mathematics (SVSM) has a legal responsibility to assure that students on all sites are provided a safe and stable environment in which to live and study. To fulfill that responsibility, all SVSM institutes have adopted these policies, which are designed to protect both the participating students and the host institutions. Please visit for more information. See Ms. Gross in the 9th grade office if you need help applying.

Governor's School

Governor’s School of North Carolina is a 5 ½ week summer residential program for gifted and talented high school students across the state. Applicants must choose from the following nomination areas: English, Mathematics, Natural Science, Spanish, French, Art, Dance, Theater, Choral Music, or Instrumental Music. Applicants must be rising seniors (current juniors). Rising juniors (current sophomores), however, can apply in the areas of dance, choral music, and instrumental music. If you are interested, please review the information on the Governor’s School website at The students application and other required materials are listed on this page. Before applying, please see Ms. Rumfelt in the Student Services office (located in the Freshman Academy) so that she can verify your eligibility.

Please see Ms. Gross if you have questions, need help applying, or would like a printout of the application.

The Washington Journalism and Media Conference

The Washington Journalism and Media Conference (WJMC) welcomes 250 students from all over the country to George Mason every summer for an intensive, residential week of leadership training in the fields of journalism and the media. Students visit the Newseum and National Press Club; hear from world-renowned journalists, including Hoda Kotb, Candy Crowley and White House correspondents from ABC, NBC, NY Times and others; and participate in a media crisis simulation where they play the roles of media outlets.

The Washington Youth Summit on the Environment

The Washington Youth Summit on the Environment (WYSE) welcomes 250 students from all over the country to George Mason every summer for an intensive, residential week of leadership training in the fields of environmental science and conservation. Students visit our partner organizations-National Geographic and the National Zoo-participate in a simulation where they play the roles of environmental scientists and community activists and hear from professionals in the field.

More information can be found at Students can self-nominate or ask Ms. Rumfelt to nominate them. Priority deadline is October 21, but nominations will be accepted on a rolling basis until all spots are filled. Application requirements for a limited number of scholarships can be found in the FAQ section. The scholarship deadline is December 9, 2016.

Please see Ms. Gross if you would like to be nominated or if you have questions.

National Youth Leadership Forum (NYLF): Medicine

Get Your Hands On Your Future in Medicine

National Youth Leadership Forum (NYLF): Medicine is your chance to gain real-world medical career experience and explore professional opportunities in the expanding fields of medicine and health care.

An interactive curriculum will allow you to use your personal and academic strengths and skills in direct, hands-on medical and health care activities and true-to-life medical simulations created by top medical training professionals.

Outdoor Medicine Simulation: When Care is Hours Away

Stanford University School of Medicine's Drs. Paul Auerbach and Henry Curtis, Department of Emergency Medicine, have collaborated with Envision to design this exciting simulation that puts you in the position of first responder as you practice the clinical skills needed in a true-to-life emergency.

Triage Simulation: When Disaster Strikes

In this simulation, designed in collaboration with Mary desVignes-Kendrick, M.D., M.P.H., Texas A&M Health Science Center School of Rural Public Health, and her team, you will respond to a disaster as a medical professional, assess and sort victims based on the severity of their injuries, and practice applying your medical knowledge in high-pressure environments.

Enroll Here:

National Youth Leadership Forum: Engineering & Technology

If you are interested, please let Ms. Rumfelt know by October 28, 2016.

The National Youth Leadership Forum (NYLF): Engineering & Technology program is designed specifically for high school students with an interest in engineering and technology and the many careers available in these dynamic fields.

Throughout the eight days of this exciting and interactive summer program, you will reside on a prominent college campus enabling you to experience campus life and campus culture while you explore the emerging fields of sustainable design, 3-D modeling, game and web development, robotics and the many disciplines of engineering.

You may attend the program at any one of these schools, all of which are ranked among the top five engineering schools nationally according to U.S. News & World Report:

  • Georgia Tech (Atlanta, GA)
  • The University of California, Berkeley (near San Francisco, CA)
  • The Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering (near Boston, MA)

At NYLF Engineering & Technology, you will be surrounded by other highly motivated school students who share your passion, and you will be challenged to put your applied knowledge to the test by taking part in engaging workshops and simulations.

You will also strengthen the time management, information analysis, public speaking, critical thinking and problem solving skills that are “must haves” according to today’s top colleges and employers!

Activities & Benefits

Join the next generation of engineering and technology innovators at the nation’s top universities for engineering! At NYLF Engineering & Technology, you will:

  • Develop your own digital model and witness a demonstration of 3-D printing technology.
  • Program a microprocessor to fly a model helicopter during the Helicopter Electronics Workshop, which was developed by Andrew Barry, a Ph.D. Candidate at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).
  • Engage in each step of the Engineering Design Process as you learn the foundations of VEX Robotics programming and explore motion and mechanisms in the Robotics Challenge.
  • Experience college culture while residing on the campus of Georgia Tech, The University of California, Berkeley or Franklin W. Olin College of Engineering, and explore the educational pathways that can lead to a fulfilling career.
  • Enjoy the sights and sounds of your host city, including Boston's Freedom Trail, Atlanta's Stone Mountain Park, or San Francisco's Pier 39.

See more at:

National Youth Leadership Forum: Law & CSI

If you would like to be nominated, please let Ms. Rumfelt know by Friday, October 28.

At the National Youth Leadership Forum (NYLF): Law & CSI, you will experience the full range of professions that exist in legal and forensic science fields and explore your opportunities for the future. This six-day summer program is held in Washington, DC.

Through hands-on experiences in crime scene investigation, evidence analysis and courtroom simulations, you will go beyond the classroom and gain the edge you need for college and a future career in law or crime scene investigation.

A behind-the-scenes college experience at George Mason University will give you new insights into the university admissions process and campus life.

By attending NYLF Law & CSI, you will be honored for your academic achievement, recognized for your leadership potential and take your place among top high school students from across the nation.

Benefits & Activities

Are you ready to explore the exciting fields of law and crime scene investigation and gain the skills and experience you need to chart your future?

At NYLF Law & CSI you will:

  • Hear from legendary criminal profiler and FBI Behavioral Analysis Unit Founder, John Douglas.
  • Explore in-depth the entire judicial process, from the discovery of a crime, through collecting and analyzing all of the critical evidence, to preparing for the courtroom process and taking part in the criminal trial.
  • Examine a court case in the Supreme Court Simulation, in which you will step forward in front of your peers to assume the role of a justice or attorney, use analytical skills to review issues relevant to the case, discover how to effectively argue your position and render a final decision – just like the Supreme Court Justices themselves!
  • Choose to take part in a legal or forensic science career experience, during which you will visit a courthouse or laboratory and interact with top professionals in your chosen career field.
  • Get a glimpse of the college experience through a visit to George Mason University, which includes a college admissions workshop, a student life panel with current undergraduates and an official campus tour.
  • Receive an official Certificate of Merit as a testament to your academic success and your contribution to the program. You may highlight this honor throughout your education, and submit a copy of your certificate with college applications.
  • Interact, collaborate and share ideas, side-by-side with other future leaders, which will inspire and motivate you throughout the program and beyond.

By completing this program, you are eligible to receive college credit from George Mason University.

- See more at:

McDowell High School, 600 McDowell High Dr. Marion, NC 28752 (P) 828-652-7920 (F) 828-652-1101